Elect Diane Nicolet
You know why newspapers wait until close to the election to endorse candidates? One reason is that the candidate who is not endorsed generally will not advertise with the newspaper. It’s money. Another is that after the endorsement, the unendorsed candidate assumes all coverage will be biased against him or her, and so he or she often refuses to discuss unrelated issues.
Screw that. The race for School Board Trustee District E is a great example of why newspapers should occasionally have the guts to eschew advertising dollars. Here’s why: The candidate who is eminently qualified for the position appears clueless as to how to get her message out. She’s never been a politician. The career politician who isn’t even qualified to be a substitute teacher in Washoe County Schools took 3,030 votes in the primary out of the 6,947 cast—based only on his name recognition.
We’re going to help her get her message out. This has got to be an election about qualifications and experience. Diane Nicolet has a doctorate in educational leadership. She has a master’s degree in education. She has 17 years teaching children. Currently, she’s the director of the E.L. Cord Child Care Center. She’s raised her own children and is a grandmother.
Dave Aiazzi has a two-year degree from Truckee Meadows Community College. He has raised children and is a grandfather. He’s an expert in bureaucracy, not education.
This is not personal. Aiazzi has often done a very good job at the Reno City Council and on many boards and commissions. He’s a great guy—huge for the arts over the years—but he’s not the right guy for this job.
Washoe County has a great opportunity with Nicolet. In fact, the idea that Aiazzi saw her infinitely superior qualifications and didn’t step out of the race—for a job where other people’s children will be affected by his lack of knowledge—suggests he’s not in it to improve Washoe County schools for us citizens, but to keep his name in the public ear for a future elected position.
People in Washoe County often lament the poor graduation rates and lack of quality in our educational system. We’ve gotten this way by not demanding that the people who make choices for our school system be qualified to make informed choices.
Not every elected position requires a certain background experience—for example, Reno City Council can be run quite efficiently by people with non-political life experience—but few thoughtful people would vote for a high school dropout for the Nevada Supreme Court. We want people who are experienced and even accomplished with the law.
We believe the person who has enough respect for education to bother to get one is the person who should be sitting on the school board.
In November, elect Diane Nicolet to the position of School Board Trustee for District E.